Prophecy, St. Brides Centre, Review

Rating (out of 5)
Show details
MST Productions
Iain Mackintosh (writer), Ken Sutherlkand (writer), Ian Turnbull (writer), Alan Borthwick (Director), Simon Hanson (musical arrangements and orchestration), James McCutcheon (musical arrangements and orchestration), Linda Stewart (Musical Director), James McCutcheon (musical supervision), Paige Orme (choreographer)
David Bartholomew (Kenneth Mackenzie, the Brahan Seer), Fiona Main (Lady Isabella Seaforth), Jennifer Good (Catriona Grant), Nicole Graham (Morna Grant), Colum Findlay (Donald Mcleod), Micheal McFarlane (Kenneth, 3rd Earl of Seaforth), Ian Lawson (Francis, 7th Earl of Seaforth)
Running time

Coming at a time when Scotland faces the possibility of huge change, the world premiere of new Scottish Musical ‘Prophecy’ is a fun and refreshing reminder of our Gaelic roots and a legend from the Isle of Lewis. MST Productions presents us with a musical account of the ‘Legend of the Brahan Seer’ combining original songs with traditional Scottish dances to recall the prophesies made by Kenneth Mackenzie and to discover whether it was indeed a gift or a curse.

Beginning in a graveyard in Uig the audience are taken on the Brahan Seer’s journey from being gifted the prophetic stone, to his travels to work on Brahan for the Lady Seaforth, to a quick trip to Paris and the 1800’s and finally to the fall of the legend himself. With dances and an abundance of songs the audience are led through the legend in a whirl of musical numbers and projection taking them back in time to the mystery which may or may not be true.

With a slightly shaky start ‘Prophecy’ wobbled to its feet with a few messy choreographed numbers and spluttered lines. It didn’t take long however for it to find solid ground boasting a range of talented cast members.

Most of the singing was commendable with Catriona Grant (Jennifer Good) and Lady Isabella Seaforth (Fiona Main) both giving great vocal performances whilst the ensemble pieces contained some lovely harmonies. A mention should also be given to Ian Lawson as Francis the 7th Earl of Seaforth who although was only briefly in the lime light, captivated the audience with his terrified and grief driven performance.

The writing was engaging and light-hearted, converting a Gaelic tale into something accessible to all (whilst still managing to hold on to the Gaelic word for the ever important national drink) and the mixtures of songs were both powerful and fun.

At times it felt as though more could have been done with the choreography and the dancers in the scene in Paris were extremely out of time, however the Highland dancing was well executed and kept a tradition to the piece. The projection did feel slightly out of place or unnecessary and took away from the simplicity of the stage which would have sufficed on its own, also adding a largely cheesy element to the use of the prophetic stone.

Overall although it did feel quite amateurish at times, ‘Prophecy’ is an enjoyable and well written new Scottish musical which with a few tweaks could be on its way to great things.

9th-13th September, 7.30pm, 2.30pm (Saturday only).